Extra Precautions in Bali Over Terror Threat

DENPASAR

Security forces have gone on increased alert throughout Bali in the wake of the Sumatra terrorist bank raid and attack on a police station in which three policemen were killed.

The ferry ports of Gilimanuk and Padang Bai are on special watch, police in Buleleng have increased patrols of remote fishing villages in the west of the regency, and police in Klungkung have posted extra officers at Nusa Penida, which they say could be an attractive training area or hiding place for terrorists.

Water Police are conducting extra patrols off Gilimanuk and a detachment from the Bali-based Densus 88 squad has been sent to the port, the Java ferry crossing point.

In Buleleng, police have increased 24-hour surveillance in Singaraja, Gerokgak and other places in conjunction with army patrols. Following the Sumatra police post attack security has been increased at Buleleng Police headquarters in Singaraja.

In Klungkung, which includes Nusa Penida, extra patrols are checking for weapons, maintaining surveillance on buildings where premises have been rented recently, and looking closely at Nusa Penida.

Meanwhile, Indonesia’s Special Forces (Kopassus) and personnel from Australia’s Special Air Service Regiment are set to hold a joint anti-terrorist exercise in Bali soon, the army announced on Friday.

Military spokesman Lt Col I Kadek Atmawijaya said the exercise would involve personnel from both forces training on an undisclosed scenario between Renon in Denpasar and Ngurah Rai International Airport. SAS officers from Australia and Kopassus officers from East Java are already in Bali planning the exercise.

West Sumatra Police on Saturday shot dead two men and arrested four others when they found them robbing six ATMs at Bung Hatta University in Padang, West Sumatra. They are looking for two other men and believe the group may number 12 to 15 in all. A small calibre pistol and Rp20 million (US$2,200) in cash were seized at the scene.

National Police spokesman Iskandar Hasan said in Jakarta the bank raid may have been linked to terrorist fundraising activities but this was not confirmed.

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